Mawlai black flag fears downplayed

SHILLONG, Aug 10: An appeal by Ka Sur Ka Bri U Hynniewtrep (Voice of the Hynniewtrep People) to the residents of Mawlai to hoist black flags instead of the Tricolour on August 13 would not lead to any law-and-order situation, Home Minister Lahkmen Rymbui said Wednesday.
The call is in protest against the failure of the National People’s Party-led MDA government to make the report on the killing of former HNLC leader Cheristerfield Thangkhiew public.
“I don’t see any possibility of breach of peace but it is the duty of the government, police and citizens to be alert,” he said, adding Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong has already explained the steps being taken in conformity with the judicial inquiry report submitted.
The Mawlai-based organisation has also asked the Meghalaya Police not to send its personnel to the locality on August 12 and 13 to prevent any unwanted incident.
Rymbui declined to comment on the ‘diktat’ as he did not have the report.
The organisation has appealed to the Mawlai residents to display black flags on their vehicles besides their houses, especially on August 13 to mark Thangkhiew’s first death anniversary. It has also decided to screen a documentary on Thangkhiew at the Mawlai bus stand on the evening of August 12 which will be followed by a public meeting.
On August 13, the organisation will join the members of the Thangkhiew family in releasing black balloons to recall the black day when the police had allegedly killed him in cold blood.
On jihadi activities, Rymbui said the state government has been sharing inputs with the central agencies.
He told reporters that the jihadi groups are a nationwide concern and not specific to Meghalaya. “Whenever we get any intelligence report, it is shared with central agencies for a coordinated action,” he said.
Taking a serious note of the presence of jihadi groups in neighbouring Assam, the Hynniewtrep Youth Council (HYC) had earlier expressed concern about the security of the people in Meghalaya.
The HYC told the MDA government that if such groups cause harm to the people of the state, it will be held responsible for its ‘failure’ in pressing the Centre to implement the ILP system in Meghalaya.

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